Biomechanic and Energetic Effects of a Quasi-Passive Artificial Gastrocnemius on Transtibial Amputee Gait
Author(s)Eilenberg, Michael Frederick; Endo, Ken; Herr, Hugh M
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State-of-the-art transtibial prostheses provide only ankle joint actuation and thus do not provide the biarticular function of the amputated gastrocnemius muscle. We develop a prosthesis that actuates both knee and ankle joints and then evaluate the incremental effects of this prosthesis as compared to ankle actuation alone. The prosthesis employs a quasi-passive clutched-spring knee orthosis, approximating the largely isometric behavior of the biological gastrocnemius, and utilizes a commercial powered ankle-foot prosthesis for ankle joint functionality. Two participants with unilateral transtibial amputation walk with this prosthesis on an instrumented treadmill, while motion, force, and metabolic data are collected. Data are analyzed to determine differences between the biarticular condition with the activation of the knee orthosis and the monoarticular condition with the orthosis behaving as a free-joint. As hypothesized, the biarticular system is shown to reduce both affected-side knee and hip moment impulse and positive mechanical work in both participants during the late stance knee flexion phase of walking, compared to the monoarticular condition. The metabolic cost of walking is also reduced for both participants. These very preliminary results suggest that biarticular functionality may provide benefits beyond even those of the most advanced monoarticular prostheses.
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory; Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Media Laboratory; Program in Media Arts and Sciences (Massachusetts Institute of Technology); Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Biomechatronics Group
Journal of Robotics
Hindawi Publishing Corporation
Michael F. Eilenberg, Ken Endo, and Hugh Herr, “Biomechanic and Energetic Effects of a Quasi-Passive Artificial Gastrocnemius on Transtibial Amputee Gait,” Journal of Robotics, vol. 2018, Article ID 6756027, 12 pages, 2018. © 2018 Michael F. Eilenberg et al.
Final published version